June 2017 marks fifty years since the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, a watershed event that consolidated and extended the 1948 ethnic cleansing of Palestine. After a half century of deepening colonization and apartheid, the “two state solution” that has long been proposed as a way to resolve the conflict appears more elusive than ever.
June 2017 also marks the one-year anniversary of the narrow defeat of the resolution in the American Anthropological Association (AAA) to boycott Israeli academic institutions. The vote was the culmination of years of vigorous debate among anthropologists about the best way for our discipline and professional association to support justice in Palestine and express solidarity with the Palestinian people.
Anthropologists for the Boycott of Israeli Academic Institutions presents a series of reflections by our colleagues to commemorate this solemn occasion:
Since the narrow defeat of the AAA Resolution 100 days ago, the Israeli state has intensified its flagrant violations of Palestinians’ basic human rights, including attacks on academic freedom. These routine violations include:
Attacks on the basic functioning of Palestinian universities
BanningDr. Adam Hanieh, Senior Lecturer at the School of Oriental & African Studies in London, from traveling to Birzeit University in the occupied West Bank to deliver a series of lectures to students.
The American Anthropological Association will vote on the boycott of Israeli academic institutions from April 15 to May 31 by electronic ballot. Do you have questions about the proposed resolution? Looking for information about what a boycott would entail? Want to find out how the boycott would affect you and/or your university?
Anthropologists for the Boycott of Academic Institutions invites you to a one-hour webinar on the boycott. Tune in to a live broadcast on Thursday, March 3, 12-1pm EST, where we will present the case for the boycott and answer all of your questions.
Myth #1: The boycott prevents Israeli and U.S. scholars from working together.
Fact: The boycott is not directed at individuals; it is directed at the institutions in which they work. It does not deny Israeli scholars the right to attend conferences (including the AAA meetings), speak at or visit U.S. universities, or publish their work in AAA publications. Nor will boycott prevent U.S. scholars from traveling to Israel. Individual AAA members will remain free to decide whether and how to implement the boycott on their own. The claim that the boycott resolution will prevent or discourage scholars from writing letters of recommendation for students or colleagues is false.
JEWISH VOICE FOR PEACE ENDORSES THE RESOLUTION TO BOYCOTT ISRAELI ACADEMIC INSTITUTIONS PROPOSED AT THE AMERICAN ANTHROPOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION
The American Anthropological Association will be discussing and voting on a resolution to boycott Israeli academic institutions at their November meeting. Jewish Voice for Peace is proud to endorse this resolution and thanks its authors for its introduction. Continue reading →
Have you signed on to the boycott of Israeli academic institutions and want to encourage your colleagues to do the same?
Holding a teach‐in on the boycott in your department can be an easy, tremendously effective way to encourage scholars to take a stand and support the boycott, and to advocate for the American Anthropological Association to do the same.
Anthropologists for the Boycott of Israeli Academic Institutions has prepared a packet with all of the resources you need to start such a discussion in your department. The packet includes names and contact information for potential guest speakers, lists of possible discussion topics and primers, tips for organizing, and advice on dealing with any push-back.
We are issuing this document to mark two anniversaries this week: one year ago, Israel began a 51-day onslaught against the Gaza Strip that inflicted unprecedented death, injury, and destruction upon the 1.8 million Palestinians living in the besieged territory. The attack galvanized international condemnation of Israel and bolstered support for the worldwide movement for boycotts, divestment, and sanctions (BDS), launched a decade ago.
Over 1,100 anthropologists have pledged so far to boycott Israeli academic institutions. Through their actions, anthropologists can show that the academic boycott is not only a matter of ethical and political urgency, but is feasible and indeed already being put into practice.
The academic boycott applies to Israeli academic institutions but not to Israeli scholars in their individual capacity. Accordingly, the advice published today emphasizes practical and flexible approaches in implementing the boycott. By outlining general principles and concrete examples, this document will empower scholars in translating the boycott into a reality. This document draws on July 2014 guidelines issued by the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic & Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) and is also inspired by the American Anthropological Association’s Principles of Professional Responsibility.
A delegation of 8 academics from 5 European countries representing the European Platform for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (EPACBI) visited seven Palestinian universities and academies in April 2015 and released a report, “Palestinian University Under Occupation,” on July 1.
A handy flyer explaining the boycott of Israeli academic institutions to anthropologists is available here. We lay out the five most important reasons for the boycott and respond to the five most common myths against it.